Good news. There are new budget OnePlus phones out there and they seem to offer pretty good value for money. These are the OnePlus Nord 2T and the OnePlus Nord CE 2 Lite. While the latter made its debut in India less than a month ago, the Nord 2T is a very new device.
With a brand new design, nice specs and aggressive pricing, the OnePlus Nord 2T could become one of the best mid-range phones on the market. Still, the Nord CE 2 Lite is also a great phone at an even lower price. Let’s learn more about these two budget beasts.
OnePlus North 2T
Design and display
Surprise, it’s a budget OnePlus with a new look. The Nord 2T has a sleek and modern-looking design with rounded corners and smooth finishes. The phone is available in two colors: Gray Shadow and Jade Fog. Both look great, and choosing one is entirely up to personal preference. This phone is more of an upgraded version of the Nord 2 than a major upgrade.
The OnePlus Nord 2T measures 159.1mm x 73.2mm x 8.2mm, meaning it is average in size for an Android smartphone. It weighs 190 grams, which is almost comparable to the Samsung Galaxy A53 5G. The most interesting part of the design of this phone is on the back. It is the camera module, which looks like a hybrid between that of the OnePlus 9 series and the new OnePlus 10 Pro. The main camera is quite large, while the other two sensors are housed in a glass cover of a single camera. There doesn’t seem to be much of a camera bump and the corners of the module are rounded. The back of this phone looks good with its matte finish but can be quite slippery. The rails have a metallic look.
The screen is the same as that of the Nord 2, a 6.43-inch 90Hz AMOLED panel with an FHD+ resolution. 90 Hz is not as good as 120 Hz, but you have to admit it is much better than a normal 60 Hz screen refresh rate. The panel is covered with Gorilla Glass 5 and except for the chin, the bezels around it are relatively small.
The OnePlus Nord 2T features dual stereo speakers and an in-display fingerprint scanner. Unfortunately, you may be disappointed to learn that this phone does not have a headphone jack and a microSD card slot.
Camera and performance
As for the camera, the OnePlus Nord 2T relies on a three-camera system with a 50MP f/1.6 Sony IMX766 main sensor. This camera also has OIS (optical image stabilization). The other two cameras are an 8MP ultrawide shooter and a 2MP depth sensor. Video recording is up to 4K 30fps. The front camera is a 32MP punch-hole shooter. This phone is powered by a MediaTek Dimensity 1300 processor. While we have to admit that we don’t know much about this chip, it should offer similar performance to the Snapdragon 778G+. The processor is paired with 8 or 12 GB of RAM and 128 or 256 GB of storage. This chip has 5G connectivity and the phone also supports Bluetooth 5.2.
Software and battery life
The OnePlus Nord 2 runs Android 12 out of the box with OxygenOS 12.1 on top. We don’t know yet how many updates this phone will get, but we think you can count on at least one major OS update.
This phone has a battery of 4,500 mAh, with which you can certainly last a day on a single charge. The good thing about the OnePlus Nord 2T is that it supports very fast 80W wired charging. What’s even better is the fact that the phone comes with the 80W charging brick in the box. You also get a protective case as part of the package, which is a nice touch.
Price and availability
The OnePlus Nord 2T is already available for pre-order across Europe. Shipping will begin on May 24. The starting price of the device is € 399.
OnePlus Nord CE 2 Lite
Design and display
An interesting design accent is a rectangular accent that runs horizontally from left to right behind the camera module. It even seems like it has a texture, which should give some grip on the device.
The OnePlus Nord CE 2 Lite measures 164.3mm x 75.6mm x 8.5mm. This means it is bigger than the Nord 2T. It is also slightly heavier, weighing in at 195g. Two color options are available: Blue Tide and Black Dusk.
The size difference to the Nord 2T is due to the phone’s larger 6.59-inch 120Hz LCD display. This screen has an FHD+ resolution. While AMOLED is always better than LCD, you do get a higher refresh rate on the Nord CE 2 Lite, which may be more important to some.
OnePlus’ Nord CE 2 Lite has a 3.5mm headphone jack and a microSD card slot. The fingerprint scanner is integrated in the on/off button.
Camera, performance and battery
The OnePlus Nord CE 2 Lite has a triple camera system. The main camera is a 64MP f/1.7 sensor, while the other two are a 2MP macro shooter and a 2MP depth sensor. Video recording is limited to 1080p 30fps. The front camera is a 16 megapixel punch sensor.
A Snapdragon 695 powers the Nord CE 2 Lite. The chip is paired with 6 GB of RAM and 128 GB of expandable storage. The device has 5G support and comes standard with Android 12.
The battery of the Nord CE 2 Lite is 5,000 mAh. This means it can last up to two days on a single charge. Speaking of charging, this budget OnePlus can charge 33W fast wired charging, and the good news is that the charger comes in the box. As part of the package, you also get a protective case and a pre-applied screen protector.
Price and availability
Pre-orders for the OnePlus Nord CE 2 Lite have already started and shipping is expected to begin on May 24. The phone will be available in Europe, Asia, the Middle East, as well as Mexico and Chile. The price of the Nord CE 2 Lite is €299.